Opening Week at Del Mar Racetrack: New attractions and world-class racing
by BLAKE BUNCH
Published - 07/14/17 - 12:34 PM | 0 0 comments | 33 33 recommendations | email to a friend | print
This year’s racing season will see Airrogate, who is favored in the Breeders’ Cup Classic, and is slated to run at Del Mar in August to race in the Pacific Classic. Also, a variety of spectator attractions will be featured for the first time. /  PHOTO CONTRIBUTED
This year’s racing season will see Airrogate, who is favored in the Breeders’ Cup Classic, and is slated to run at Del Mar in August to race in the Pacific Classic. Also, a variety of spectator attractions will be featured for the first time. / PHOTO CONTRIBUTED
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Wednesday, July 19 will mark 80 years of racing at Del Mar Racetrack. While the tried-and-true mainstays of social activity still bring out the masses, this year there are a few surprises in the works. From exploring different music genres, to world class horse racing and new spectator opportunities, things are going to kick off in true fashion of America’s Finest City.

“This year we have a few new events that we’re really excited about,” said Craig Dado, executive vice president and chief marketing officer of the Thoroughbred Club. “On Saturday, July 22 (opening weekend), we will be hosting an event entailing Chargers players from the 1960s to modern day – thanking the fans for cheering them on all these years. During the event, the Chargers will be brought out to the winner’s circle by decade, and will sign autographs for half an hour.”

Another major draw to this year’s racing season will be Arrogate, a top horse in the field, will be featured in the San Diego Handicap. Arrogate is favored in the Breeders’ Cup Classic, and Dado says they anticipate him to return to Del Mar in August to race in the Pacific Classic.

“Arrogate is truly a remarkable horse,” said Dado. “He’s won over $17 million thus far, and only lost once in his career, so this is really big that he will be a part of the season.”

As in years past, the live music aspect of this year’s race season will attract some of the biggest acts across various spectrums.

Perhaps a first event of its kind, Del Mar Racetrack will host a country day at the track on Saturday, Aug. 5. On “country day,” spectators are encouraged to rock their best country gear (a bit different than typical attire) and will be treated to a chili cook-off. That evening, country music staple Billy Currington will take the stage.

Two weekends after that, and on a polar opposite note, Ludacris will perform on Saturday, Aug. 12.

“It is exciting to have such a wide array of entertainment this year,” said Dado. “From country one weekend, to hip hop shortly thereafter, there’s truly something for everyone. one of the busiest nights we should see this year, music-wise, will be local act Slightly Stoopid. They always bring a crowd.”

As though the annual San Diego event did not already have mass appeal, this year’s attractions and race lineup should definitely bring out spectators in droves.
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